Trenton and Bell teams earn split

At Trenton High School Tuesday night the Bell and Trenton basketball teams split a pair of Class 1A-District 6 games before a raucous Gilchrist County crowd.

The host Lady Tigers cruised to a 76-20 win against Bell.

“It was good to be back,” said Trenton coach Bryant Frye, who missed the last two games as part of a two-game suspension. “I think the girls executed really well.”

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All five starters scored in double figures for Trenton (14-2, 8-0), led by junior Bri Becker with 16 points.

“I feel like our team really played well,” Becker said. “We were unselfish and I’m proud of how we played together. It was an awesome night because they’re our rivals.”

Becker scored 10 of her game-high 16 points in the first half as Trenton built a commanding 50-11 lead at the half.

“She’s the floor general,” Frye said. “She gets all of her teammates involved. I think they’ve got great chemistry right now, and if they keep that up then I think we’ll have a good chance to maybe make it to Lakeland.”

Junior Ta’Tyiana Jackson was next with 13 points, followed by junior Jordan Douglas and senior Samarie McHenry with 11 each, and senior Janiyah King with 10.

It was the 10th running clock of the season for Trenton, which improved to 76-0 in league games under coach Bryant Frye since 2015.

“Ideally we like to score 20 points in each quarter and give up just five points on the defensive end,” he said. “That’s our barrier. I was mixing some starters with some bench players because you never know, when you get to the playoffs, if someone has foul trouble, they have to learn to play together.”

Trenton will travel to Union County on Thursday night, while Bell (11-7, 3-4) will play at Dixie County.

The boys game was back-and-forth.

Bell and Trenton were tied at the half 20-20, but the Bulldogs outscored the Tigers 18-13 in the fourth quarter and won 51-43.

The visiting Bulldogs, who defeated Trenton by two in December, swept the two-game series.

“Any time Trenton and Bell play it’s always going to be a good game,” said Bell coach Chuck Mehl. “We made some shots down the stretch and they missed some, so that helped. I thought it was a well-played game by both teams.”

Trenton played without head coach Cedric Booth, who tested positive for COVID-19 before the game and went into quarantine. Trenton middle school head coach Ryan Hausner took the helm in his place. 

Senior Austin Arban gave the Bulldogs (10-5, 5-0) an early lift, scoring six of his 10 points in the opening quarter as Bell built an early 10-7 lead at the end of the first quarter.

Austin Arban

“We had two big men out today (starting center John Spigelmeyer and second leading scorer Daniel Pittman), but the other kids stepped up,” Mehl said. “So, we were very pleased.”

Rankin, who got the start for Spigelmeyer, also scored 10 points. Senior Josh Mendoza and senior Tristan Townsend each scored 11 points.

Junior Tyler Perry led Trenton (8-9, 4-4) with 13 points, followed by sophomore Mason Smith with 11.

Trenton will travel to Union County on Thursday, while Bell will travel to Dixie County on Friday.

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